Sowing spring beans? Here are a few tips

Teagasc held a series of winter crop walks last week and gave some pointers to farmers planning on sowing beans this spring. Many have taken to the fields already, while more will venture in the coming days if weather allows.


It is advised to apply fertiliser before planting. Phosphorus (P) and potassium (K) should be applied according to the soil sample results.


Seeds should be drilled to a depth of 10cm (4in) into a fine seedbed. Teagasc advises a target of 36 seeds/m², in order to establish 32 plants/m².

Seed rate, as always, should be calculated using thousand grain weight (TGW).

Seed rates:
  • TGW of 600 – 216kg/ha or 13.6st/ac;
  • TGW of 650 – 234kg/ha or 14.9st/ac;
  • TGW of 700 – 252kg/ha or 16.1st/ac;
  • TGW of 750 – 270kg/ha or 17.2st/ac.

A fine seedbed will help to improve the effectiveness of herbicides. Rolling can play a part in the weed control strategy as well, but be thoughtful of ground conditions if hooking up to the roller – it can be a dangerous machine in the wrong conditions.

Pre-emergence weed control options

Pre-emergence herbicides should be applied as close to planting as possible.

Some options include:
  • Nirvana at 3.5-4.5L/ha;
  • Stallion at 3.0L/ha;
  • Nirvana at 2.5L/ha + Defy or Roxy at 4.0L/ha.